The second Battle of the Masurian Lakes, likewise known together the Winter battle of the Masurian Lakes, to be the northern component of the central Powers" offensive on the eastern Front in the winter the 1915. The offensive was to plan to development beyond the Vistula River and perhaps knock Russia out of the war.

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Background

The central Powers planned four offensives on your Eastern front in early 1915. The Germans, led through Paul von Hindenburg, would attack eastward from their front heat in western Poland, which had actually been inhabited after the battle of Łódź in 1914, towards the Vistula flow and additionally in east Prussia in the vicinity of the Masurian Lakes (site the the 1914 fight of the Masurian Lakes). The Austro-Hungarians would arise from the Carpathian hill passes to strike the Russians by driving towards Lemberg. They would be led by general Alexander von Linsingen. Additional south general Borojevic von Bojna would certainly attempt to relieve the besieged fortress in ~ Przemysl.

The Attack

German chef of staff Erich von Falkenhayn strongly thought that the war would be won on the west Front. Nonetheless, he sent four extr army corps to Paul von Hindenburg, command of your Eastern Front. By February 1915, thirty-six percent the the German field military was in the east.

German Ninth army attacked from Silesia into Poland in ~ the finish of January; they exit tear gas, which quit their assault by blowing back on the attackers. The Russians counterattacked v eleven divisions under a solitary corps commander, losing 40,000 males in three days. In eastern Prussia, additional Russian attacks were clogged by trench lines extending between the Masurian Lakes; they were held by the German Eighth Army, commanded by general Otto von Below. The Eighth army was reinforced by several of the newly arrived corps, if the rest of them became the German Tenth Army, commanded by Colonel-General Hermann von Eichhorn, which was formed on the German left. The Tenth army was to it is in one wing of a pincers intended to surround your opponents: general Sievers" Russian Tenth Army. A new Russian Twelfth military under general Pavel Plehve to be assembling in Poland about 100 kilometres (62 mi) come the southwest.

Sievers warned the Northwest front commander, basic Nikolai Ruzsky, that they were likely to it is in attacked, however was ignored. ~ above February 7, regardless of a heavy snowstorm, the left wing of Below"s Eighth military launched a surprise attack against Sievers, whose trenches to be shallow, disconnected ditches, with tiny or no barbed wire since the very first shipments had not arrived till December 1914. The adhering to day, the German Tenth Army also drove forward. Snow, through drifts together high as a man, slowed German progression down the roadways for the first two days; turn off the roads, the ground was also boggy because that fighting. Regardless of these formidable obstacles, the German pincers advanced 120 kilometres (75 mi) in a week, inflicting major casualties on the Russians. Together the Russians withdrew, the center of the German Eight military began to thrust forward. The Russian withdrawal to be disorderly; plenty of prisoners were taken. Russian counterattacks on the lengthening flank the the German Tenth military were beaten back. German men and horses fed on recorded provisions, so just ammunition had to be hauled as much as them. The eye was then washed far by torrential rain. The climax of the fight was ~ above February 18, when the Russian 20th military Corps, under basic Bulgakov, was surrounded by the German Tenth army in the large Augustow Forest. ~ above February 21, the survivors indigenous the corps surrendered.

The heroic stand of the Russian 20th Corps detailed the time required for the remainder of the Russian Tenth army to kind a brand-new defensive position. Top top February 22, the job after the surrender that the 20th Corps, Plehve"s Russian Twelfth army counterattacked, i beg your pardon checked further German advancements and lugged the battle to one end. One source gives Russian losses as 92,000 prisoners and 300 guns, while one more gives 56,000 men and also 185 guns. The Germans shed 7,500 men and 14 guns.

The Germans besieged the Russian fortress at Osowiec, but were can not to take it.

Outcome

The second Battle the the Masurian Lakes provided the Germans a toehold in Russia; however, the Russians blocked more advances. In the complying with weeks, the Germans drove the Russians out of their remaining tiny enclaves in eastern Prussia.

Further south, Alexander von Linsingen"s offensive had actually failed with serious losses, and the fortress at Przemysl had actually been compelled to surrender to the Russians. Clearly, the very first Austro-Hungarian offensives of 1915 were abject failures. Henceforth, the Austro-Hungarians and Germans would occupational together much more closely.

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A civilization war is a battle involving numerous or most of the world"s most powerful and populous countries. World wars expectancy multiple countries on multiple continents, through battles battled in lot of theatres. The hatchet is used to the two major international disputes that arisen during the twentieth century: the very first and the 2nd World War.

World war I Battles

1914 respectable 1914 September 1914 October 1914 November 1914 December
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U.S. Marines in Belleau hardwood (1918) ×

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explicate of the battle of Doberdò, battled in respectable 1916 in between the Italian and also the Austro-Hungarian militaries ×